Master of urban planning degree programs prepare students for careers in city planning, regional planning and related areas. The urban planning masters program is often housed in a school of architecture and planning, a design school, geography departments, public policy schools and public administration departments. The urban planner or city planners solve many problems for those living in large cities, and small towns also. They look into the best ways to utilize the land. This includes development for neighborhoods, shopping centers, and parks. A great deal of things are taken into consideration, and a good city planner can greatly improve the quality of life for the entire community. For this type of employment, you need a Master of Urban Planning Degree, for most positions. A Bachelor’s Degree in this field is important. Check with the university or learning institution, as there may be things like GRE scores and transcripts needed. You might need things like letters of recommendation. Also your past grade averages may be very important for admission.
Urban Planning Education and Training
Most Master of urban planning degree programs can be completed in two years. Your main objective will be to understand the goals of the city planner, and know how to analyze statistics and law. It is also important to have a firm grasp on economics.
Some of the courses you may take in the master of urban planning degree program include Economic Methods, Public Development, and Private Development. City and Real Estate Development is also important. You will also need credits in Transportation and Infrastructure.
Although certification may not be necessary, it can lead to the best employment opportunities. You could be required to have experience working in a city planner’s office. You will need to take and pass a certification exam. In a few states, you might be required to have a state license. You should check with your state agency to see if there are any additional requirements for the job, before applying.
Careers in Urban Planning
Urban and regional planning jobs vary from state to state and city to city but you can find employment opportunities with the private and public sector. City Planner is not the only option in this field. You may find work as an Infrastructure Manager or Housing and Development Planner. You also may be able to work as a consultant, with experience.
A city planner will have deadlines to meet, and may need to travel a lot. If your job involves site inspections, you may spend a lot of your time, in the field. You also may have to deal with special interest groups, which have an interest in projects or developments. Communication skills are a must.
You may need to use a computer a great deal, for research and analysis. You will need to study and report on many aspects of land usage, such as streets, water lines, schools, libraries, and airports. You may need to come up with proposals for many kinds of improvements to the city, also.
Estimated Income and Projected Job Outlook
The average wage for a regional or city planner is $60,000 in 2008. It is possible to make at least $90,000 per year, and some people may make as low as $38,000 per year. This will depend on area, the job, education and experience.
Above average growth is expected in this industry. Yet, those with a Master of Urban Planning Degree will have the best chance for employment and advancement. There is an expected growth rate of nineteen percent for the coming decade. Income and outlook figures are taken from the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics.